News / Africa

Condemnation of Attack on South Sudan UN Base Grows

Civilians crush up against the gates of the UNMISS compound in Bor, Jonglei state, days after South Sudan erupted in violence in December 2013.
Civilians crush up against the gates of the UNMISS compound in Bor, Jonglei state, days after South Sudan erupted in violence in December 2013.
VOA News

The United States and United Nations Security Council added their voices to the chorus of international condemnation of this week's deadly attack on the U.N. Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) compound in Bor and a flare-up of violence around the young country.

The U.S. Embassy in Juba released a statement Friday signed by the United States, six European countries and the European Union delegation in South Sudan, all saying they are "profoundly concerned by the reports of the killing and injuring of civilians in Bentiu, Bor, and elsewhere, and condemn these atrocities in the strongest terms."

"Leaders of both sides in South Sudan’s conflict must recognize that targeting civilians and UN personnel, whether by formal military units or informal 'youth militias,' is completely unacceptable and constitutes flagrant violations of the Cessation of Hostilities agreement, which both the government and rebels have signed," the statement said.

A U.N. official said at least 40 people were killed when a large group of armed civilians stormed the U.N. compound in Bor on Thursday and began firing indiscriminately at people who were sheltering inside the base.

Most of the nearly 5,000 civilians sheltering inside the Bor base are women and children.

The number of people seeking refuge at the U.N. base in Bentiu, the capital of

People fleeing violence in Bentiu, the capital of Unity state, South Sudan, arriving at UNMISS base on 15 April 2014 to seek shelter. Photo: UNMISS/Mihad AbdallahPeople fleeing violence in Bentiu, the capital of Unity state, South Sudan, arriving at UNMISS base on 15 April 2014 to seek shelter. Photo: UNMISS/Mihad Abdallah
x
People fleeing violence in Bentiu, the capital of Unity state, South Sudan, arriving at UNMISS base on 15 April 2014 to seek shelter. Photo: UNMISS/Mihad Abdallah
People fleeing violence in Bentiu, the capital of Unity state, South Sudan, arriving at UNMISS base on 15 April 2014 to seek shelter. Photo: UNMISS/Mihad Abdallah

oil-producing Unity state, jumped from 7,000 to 12,000 in the space of a few days this week, as locals fled new fighting between government and opposition forces vying for control of the town, UNMISS spokesman Joe Contreras said.
 

Attacks may be war crime


The eight signatories of the statement -- the United States, United Kingdom and Norway, which make up the so-called South Sudan troika; Denmark, France, Germany, the Netherlands and the E.U. Delegation -- warned that, "Those responsible for attacks against civilians, and otherwise violating the Cessation of Hostilities agreement, can be held accountable."

Leaders of both sides in South Sudan’s conflict must recognize that targeting civilians and UN personnel, whether by formal military units or informal 'youth militias,' is completely unacceptable...



The United Nations Security Council "condemned in the strongest terms these acts and underscored that attacks on civilians and UN peacekeepers may constitute a war crime,” said a statement released to the media Friday.

In its own statement, released Thursday -- the day of the attack in Bor -- the U.S. State Department said that "the deliberate targeting of civilians during these attacks is unacceptable and those responsible for such acts must be held accountable."

Jeremy Konyndyk, the Director of USAID's Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA),  who was in South Sudan on an official visit at the time of the attack, wrote on microblogging site Twitter:
 

 U.S. Senator Chris Coons of Delaware also took to Twitter to condemn the assault:

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon spoke out hours after the Bor attack, saying: "Any attack on United Nations peacekeepers is unacceptable and constitutes a war crime." He also called the assault a  "serious escalation" of the four-month-old crisis in South Sudan.

You May Like

Disappointing Report on China's Economy Shakes Markets

In London and New York shares lost 3 percent, while Paris and Germany dropped around 2.4 percent More

DRC Tries Mega-Farms to Feed Population

Park at Boukanga Lonzo currently has 5,000 hectares under cultivation, crops stretching as far as eye can see, and is start of ambitious large-scale agriculture plan More

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Areas are spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, source of livelihood for fishermen and herders who have called the marshes home for generations More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs